Jokela, Eddie R. Sgt. First Class National Guard

MINNESOTA, Wolf Lake – Funeral services were held for EDDIE R. JOKELA, 90, on January 26, 2010, at St. John’s Lutheran Church in Park Rapids, Minnesota. A military burial with the 10th Mountain Division Honor Guard and flag presentation was followed at Green Valley Cemetery, west of Menahga, Minnesota. Eddie was born January 8, 1920, on the original Jokela Homestead between Wolf Lake and Park Rapids. He pasesd away January 12, 2010, following a stroke.


    At less than 21 years of age, Eddie encourage his mother to sign for him to join the National Guard. Eddie was one of the first 25 men chosen to the 10th Mountain Division. Eddie was also one of 50 tapped as a ski instructor, was in Paramount News Films about skiing and was pleased to play on the 10th Mountain Division’s official baseball team w/many major leaguers of the times. Assigned to Company M of the original 87th Mountain Infantry Regiment, he earned the rank of 1st Sergeant (senior enlisted) due to his rugged upbringing and hunting skills. He was the youngest first sergeant in the entire division of 20,000. He served in the Aleutian Islands against the Japanese, the Germans in the Alps of Italy, Austria and the surrender in Yugoslavia. After his second tour of duty, he returned from a hospital in Italy decorated with the Bronze Star Medal, EAMET Ribbon w/2 Bronze Service Stars, Asiatic Pacific Theater Ribbon w/Bronze Service Star, Combat Infantryman Badge, American Defense Ribbon, Good Conduct Medal and Purple Heart. In 1949, he was encouraged to become an auctioneer.

     Upon graduation from the Reisch School of Auctioneering in Mason City, Iowa, he founded the family business, the Eddie R. Jokela Auction Co. He conducted over 8,000 auctions in nine states during his career. He was a member of the Minnesota State Auctioneer’s Association and the National Auctioneer’s Association. During a 35-year period, Eddie was the featured auctioneer at livestock barns throughout Minnesota. He and his wife, Lorraine, had a hugely popular regional band, Swing N Sway with M&J. His hometown of Wolf Lake honored him by naming him first Commander of VFW Post 8510, nominating him in their Baseball Hall of Fame and asking him to lead the veterans in the D-Day Parade after WWII. (Anishinaabeg Today, February 3, 2010)

 

 

 

 

0
0
0